KUPPET Nyamira County boldly reflects on TPD matter.
REFLECTIONS ON THE MUCH HYPED TPD BY TSC AND NATIONAL UNION OFFICIALS
As a professionally trained & practicing teacher and Teachers’ representative, my attention has been drawn on the much hyped TPD modules as sanctioned and Forcefully prescribed upon the Kenyan teachers by the TSC and the TOP NATIONAL UNION LEADERSHIP under the disguise of professionalising the teaching profession.
My Reflections are guided by the TSC’s and Top Unions leadership’s contestations that;
1. The Kenyan Teachers’ are either semi-skilled or unskilled
2. Teachers are not professionals and thus the only way to professionalise them is by taking a TPD module lasting for a period of 30 years
3. The teachers will pay ksh.6000 per year and meet all the other costs for the training.
4 The teachers will be required to renew their teaching certificate after every 5 years and after completing 5 chapters of the so called TPD Modules.
5.That there exist two types of TPD modules; one for class room teachers and the other for school administrators.
6. That there are only 4 institutions with the capacity to train teachers on the so called TPD Modules.
7. Failure to complete the TPD module, one will be deregisted and consequently barred from practicing as a teacher.
Before I give my Reflections on the TPD modules, let me state from the very onset that the the TPD modules do not meet the minimum threshold for fair and Just labour practice, neither do they aim at improving the teaching and academic standards in the Kenyan Education System,
and that the proponents and sympathisers of this TPD modules are hellbent in continuously blocking teachers’ from advancing academically thus killing both their prospects of rising in the academic ladder to professorship and emancipating themselves and their families from the misery and york of poverty. Infact I dare speculate, that the proponents and framers of this dehumanizing,anti-family cohesion TPD modules aim at one cardinal thing; making teachers continue wallowing in the miasma of poverty and misery. This retrogressive, irrational, demeaning, unjust and draconian labour practice that is being perpetuated by TSC with the support of thel National Unions’ Top leadership must be resisted and fought by all those who mean well for the future of this Nation.
Back to my Reflections on the Ill-intentioned TPD modules and its implications to the Teaching profession and The Education system in Kenya.
1.Can a teacher who has successfully completed and satisfied the board of Examiners, and consequently awarded BED degree be termed as unqualified or untrained or lacking special training in teaching? Certainly Not! , it is my considered view that anyone arguing that BED are unskilled or semi- skilled, lacks the very basic understanding of the structure, curriculum, examination and eventual certifiction of BED degrees to graduands, I invite such individuals and their supporters to take time and intellectually familiarize themselves with how teachers are trained, certified and employed to work in our schools. Is it possible for TSC to employ any graduate from our universities to teach in our schools?
I therefore contend that Kenyan teachers are well trained by highly qualified lecturers/ tutors from accredited institutions of higher learning that train teachers for both local and international development market. If indeed Kenyan teachers were to be unskilled, then Brother Tabichi and Mr. Odube would have not been cleared to compete leave alone winning the global and continental awards respectfully. From the above demonstration, the Kenyan teachers deserve an apology following the unfortunate demeaning of the teaching profession and teachers generally from the very people who were supposed to protect the status of the teaching profession and the rights of teachers.
2. Unlike the proponents ( TSC and National Union top leadership) who believe that teaching is not a profession, I have demonstrated in 1 above that teachers have specialized training in foundations of education, educational psychology, pedagogical and evaluation skill(2. Unlike the proponents ( TSC and National Union top leadership) who believe that teaching is not a profession, I have demonstrated in 1 above that teachers have specialist training in foundations of education, educational psychology, pedagogical and evaluation skill( Curriculum, and development), administration and Management, to mention just but a few academic areas that make education a highly skilled and specialized profession,that only lacks a professional body to regulate it and prevent untrained people in education from managing, heading and purporting to draft policies in the education sector, leave alone owning and running schools.
It is my humble considered view, that forcing a teacher to be trained using subjective and substandard TPD Modules that were developed by a husband and wife teaching in one of the selected institutions to offer TPD training in the entire teaching career shall never transform teaching into a profession. The aim of TPD is to prevent teachers from going back to college to advance their studies.
In-service training and refresher courses are internationally recognized trends best practices used by employers and governments world over to improve production by equipping employees with emerging trends in their specific areas of training and channel of production. Unlike this Ill-intentioned TPD modules, it is the employer or Government that meets the cost of training and such courses do not run the working life of the employees. It is in this view that TPD must be RESISTED until such a time when the government through TSC is ready and able to in-service it’s employees within reasonable time frame and when there is justifiable need to do so supported by empirically verifiable Data.
4. Does periodical renewal of practicing certificate make one a better teacher? or non_renewal make one less competent in his/her area of specialisation? certainly not,if renewal of teaching certificate does not in anyway affect the overall productivity of the teachers, why introduce it? The rationale behind it is to siphon millions from teachers in form of renewal fees from teachers. If the main aim of TPD is to siphon cash from teachers through renewal of Certificates, we teachers are pursuaded to resist TPD as we have already done and will continue to do.
It is illogical and lack of understanding from the framers and proponents of TPD to invisage that a secondary school teacher’s comprehension ability is such low to the extent that he/she requires a whole year to comprehend the contents of a single chapter in the subjective TPD Module.
5. The preparation of two different TPD Modules one for classroom teachers and the other for School administrators and subsequent approval of the modules by the employer is a clear manifestation of the shallow or lack of understanding on how the career pathways for school administrators and the general operations in a Kenyan school set up. We do not have two sets of professionally trained teachers i.e one destined to be classroom teachers and the other pre-determined administrators. If the developers of the TPD Modules and the approvers there of for use of the modules do not understand the very basic principle; that school administrators are picked from classroom teachers upon attaining the minimum grade and availability of vacancies then how can we trust the relevance and efficacy of the training? No we can not! Teachers shall only take part in refresher courses or/and in-service training if and only if, the materials/ resources for the training are developed by a team of highly qualified Dons who have both academic and demonstratable knowledge and expertise in all the spheres in education but specially in teacher training and practice.
It is the speculation of the writer, that continued forceful dual implementation of TPD Modules in the current form only points to a hidden cunning scheme byTSC to block classroom teachers from rising to become school administrators, as the current administrators at some point will exit the service and be replaced by non-teachers on the pretext that classroom teachers are not trained as school administrators as per the Ill-intentioned TPD Modules. Teachers have not forgotten of the MoE’s proposal to have Financial Managers in our schools, and the manner in which TSC gave two years contract to only principals who had reached retirement age leaving out classroom teachers, yet we have qualified Deputies to take up such positions. In light of the above demonstration Teachers shall continue saying NO to TPD Modules.
6. If TPD, is well intentioned and Not geared towards enriching few individuals/institutions, why localize it to only 4 institutions, yet we have over 25 institutions of higher learning accredited to offer BED at university level across the country? It is my contestation that any in-service training or refresher courses for teachers shall not only be sponsored by the employer , but also institutions offering such courses/training must be well spread and easily accessible by the trainees ( teachers) with highly qualified trainers in Education.
7. Can a subjective Module that doesn’t lead to the award of either a certificate or diploma or degree be superior than The 4year BED degree? professionally not. This requirement in the TPD, is a direct intimidation, threats aimed at instilling fear among teachers thus indirectly forcing teachers to register for TPD, the ultimate aftermath is to increase the cash for the few selected individuals.
These Reflections are part of our determination as teachers to increase critical awareness among major stakeholders in education and Kenyans of good will to to Join the Kenyan Teachers in RESISTING THE ILL-INTENTIONED TPD MODULES. Let these reflections stir and arouse our critical conciousness as leaders and teachers to resist TSC’s cunning schemes of ensuring that the teachers continue wallowing in the miasma of misery and poverty, even when doing so is perceived as a threat to our positions, our Jobs or even our lives. we must do this now to protect this profession and for future generations
(Assistant Executive secretary KUPPET Nyamira and , career Teacher by Choice.)
Edited by F.O…….indeed the parting shot is kuppet is untangling itself from the semi skilled narrative portrayed by employer as knut continues entangling itself into murky waters of allowing its members to labelled unskilled, Oyuu has accepted primary teachers are useless that’s why he can eat agency fee at the behest of their suffering. Ngako…